Their Eyes Were Watching Nanny

Another sighting from the nanny files. A reader writes us yesterday (Sunday)…

I’m not sure what else to do with this info but as a mom, I feel like I have to let someone know about it and I can’t think of any other way to get this out to the Montclair parents who need to know about the danger their nanny put their child in today.

My husband, daughter, and I were at Brookdale Park in the little playground today around 2:30 p.m. A little blonde girl around 4 yrs old came in w/a yellow tricyle, by herself. 10 minutes later a black woman with a Jamaican accent came into the playground and asked if I would watch the little girl while the nanny went to the bathroom (out of eyeshot). I said yes, but I couldn’t believe she was leaving the little girl alone with complete strangers. The nanny was gone over 15 minutes and my husband and I were considering taking the little girl to the police station. When the nanny came back she didn’t interact with the little girl at all and stayed on her cell phone until we left the playground. I told the little girl that she should let her parents know that her nanny left her alone with us. The little girl referred to the nanny as “Denise”. Denise was about 40 yrs old and had two gold front teeth with dollar signs engraved in the teeth.
I was absolutely horrified that this nanny left the little girl alone with complete strangers for over 15 minutes. As a parent, I’d want to know about this.
Thanks.

Click here to sign up for Baristanet's free daily emails and news alerts.

54 COMMENTS

  1. C’mon, “Denise” probably just was gone so long because she had to meet her pimp or needed to get measured for a new grill.

  2. I am all about personal expression and hate to sound close minded, but would YOU hire a nanny with two gold teeth engraved with dollar signs?
    Boggling.

  3. Sounds like the mom and dad of this little girl are the problem.
    Let’s agree that there is a fine line between close mindedness and having a healthy dose of scepticism, and that very often, it is the healthy dose of the latter that separates the wise among us from the foolish.

  4. As a mom recently working part-time, I get to the playgrounds 1-2 days a week which is a new experience for me. I’ve seen a lot of “bad nanny behavior” (totally ignoring kids, staying on cell phones the entire time, not really watching or monitoring very small children) which borders on the dangerous. I’ve also seen a lot of nannies who I’ve mistaken for grandparents, as they were so loving and kind to the children in their care.
    I have to empathize with parents who have few choices for childcare options–I’ve been there myself. And people wonder why educated women are leaving their full-time jobs when they have kids. The options are just plain lousy. I’m so very tired of the un-family friendly mindset!

  5. I agree also that the parents are the problem. I wouldnt let the nanny described in this story near my favorite pet let alone a 4 year old? Come on. Yes child care options arent the best, but common sense has to come into play here. (And by the way not all Carribean accents are Jamaican).

  6. I agree also that the parents are the problem. I wouldnt let the nanny described in this story near my favorite pet let alone a 4 year old? Come on. Yes child care options arent the best, but common sense has to come into play here. (And by the way not all Carribean accents are Jamaican).

  7. This shows a distinct lack of judgment on the part of the nanny. Little did she know that the strangers she picked out to watch the kid were the kind to contemplate turning her over to the police after 15 minutes.

  8. Am I the only one who cannot imagine turning my young over to anyone (except my baby’s mama, but she won her grill from a radio station promotion) with “two gold front teeth with dollar signs engraved in the teeth”?

  9. Cro adding such content to the discussion.
    So yes, Robin spoke of “hiring” the nanny. I chose to include the specific point of “handing the child over” to the nanny.
    Thinking that, like my baby’s mama, she took her grill out for the interview with the parents….

  10. Oh, and cro, should I let you know when I’m heading out tonight so you can stop checking for my posts?
    Better yet, keep checking– it’ll keep you busy until Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve.

  11. Prof, you can’t be so convinced that I’m that into you.
    Now put down the potato chips and for God’s sake, change the work shirt. You’ve had it on for 2 days. some curtains might work well in the den, by the way.
    walleroo, I’m done. He’s all yours. I’m guessing some go-round with the prof will cure your holiday blues.

  12. ummmmmm… porn spam……… My favorite flavor spam….
    That’s the spam that kept the English fed during WW II (the big one).

  13. regarding the original point of this thread: i think that what transpired is dangerous enough to the welfare of the child that the police should be called regardless. I don’t care if she was gone 15 minutes or 1 minute. she clearly is unfamiliar with the basic rules of child safety and care. i would consider contacting the police in order to locate the parents and inform them that you were handed their child to watch. if you were this parent’s child, wouldn’t you consider this information top priority?

  14. Are you kidding? How can we allow these parents, who have judgment so poor as to leave their kid with a nanny who has dollar signs on her teeth, to continue to raise this child? It is our duty to make sure this child is taken away from her negligent parents and made a ward of the state. I shall do everything in my power to make it so.

  15. Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in……
    My wish for 2008 is that capitalization comes back into fashion (as well basic rules of grammar).
    I wish. I wish. I wish…….
    Oh, and walleroo– I’d love to have you as the leader of this Nanny State instead of the bearded wonder.

  16. >>>>”Are you kidding? How can we allow these parents, who have judgment so poor as to leave their kid with a nanny who has dollar signs on her teeth, to continue to raise this child? It is our duty to make sure this child is taken away from her negligent parents and made a ward of the state. I shall do everything in my power to make it so.”

  17. I agree franliscio. But, another issue here is that too many of these parents are prioritizing other expenditures over their children. Let’s be honest – there are appropriate childcare choices, as well as tax deductions, for working, middle and upper-income parents. These untrained baby-sitters/light housekeepers, are cheaper than licensed facilities, or certified workers – from any nation.
    I once suggested to a wealthy young couple who were dismayed that they saw their nanny engaging in unacceptable behavior toward their child (on their state-of-the-art nanny-cam), that they to consider their expectations. Each parent was driving a vehicle that cost at least 40% more than they were paying their untrained, undocumented, nanny! This in addition to the huge, custom built house, furs, vacations, spa treatments, etc. Neither of these parents would have hired such grossly unqualified staff on his/her job. Is it prudent or sane to expect a worker whom YOU value less than your machinery and toenails to protect your children?

  18. Good point, nana. A great many of these caregivers are in the country (those from other shores, of course) for reasons that have nothing to do with watching and caring for kids. That is just the means to the end, and their qualifications and/or dedication to the task is not always what it should be. Of course, as always you get what you pay for, and if you are going to pay someone $250 a week to work 35-40 hours, you won’t usually get much.
    I share prof’s wish for capitalization and basic grammar to come back into vogue — even, as he would say, in the “venacular”.

  19. nana,
    You are absolutely right. My wife and I both work, and we have had wonderful nanny for our boys for nearly 3 years. Although from another country (legally), she speaks excellent English, is a grandmother herself, and is a Sunday school teacher to boot. And no, she is not cheap.
    But to your point, we live in a small house, we don’t drive fancy cars and I don’t have a 62 inch flatscreen hanging on my living room wall.
    It is all about priorities, and for most of us, the reality is that we can’t have it all. And I’d rather “have” these two bright, well-behaved and very much loved little boys more than anything else in life.
    Happy New Year everyone.

  20. Nannys are strangers. Even the best ones. My sister was talking to this woman who was admiring my nieces and nephews. “They are doing so well and are so well behaved! What is your secret? Do you have any advice?” My sister said, “I have some advice. The first thing you do is fire that nanny of yours. Your kids want you.” Sanctimommy is generally too timid to go for the gold standard of judgment on this issue: “Simplify. Then do what you have to to watch and teach children who want to see your face all day.” Ask your kids whether they want you to watch them, or the nanny. Go with the answer. Hiring nannies then policing them is weird.

  21. I think that if I was a working mom, I’d have opted for day care because then the nanny/sitter (a stranger) is not one-on-one with the child. In daycare there are other adults in the building, other parents dropping in and out during the day.

  22. Brinew2. Thank you for reminding us that children want and deserve the attention of their parents/guardians, first and foremost. When they are given a choice between luxury, stuff, and quality time with parents, the latter always trumps. If you work, quality time is even sweeter!
    Now, “children” it’s New Year’s Eve, and I am going to give my full attention to Joshua Bell & NY Philharmonic, then “Sponge Bob” movie, another round of “Wag the Dog”, then some great Old School Be Bop Jazz CD’s with my blackeye peas and ham hocks! You younger bloods can brave the mild winter weather, kids in tow, and enjoy the spectacular line-up of First Night, and the lucky singles with partners or benefits can just stay home and …(don’t laugh – I remember) 🙂
    In 2008, let’s put children, world peace, and Mother Earth first, and get a new municipal council!
    Thanks for many posts that made me laugh! Happy and Healthy New Year to one and all!

  23. to all of my ‘fellow’ posters….neocons, trolls, liberals, conservative, and bleeding heart apologists…Happy New Year and remember there is plenty of room under the Barista umbrella for all of our points of view.
    All the best in 2 ought eight

  24. The nanny is a blooming idiot and the parents are likewise. Sell the damn house in Glen Ridge or Montclair that you really cannot afford, and dump that Nazi-brand car for a less expensive car and let “Mom” quit work, and stay home and protect her most important treasure, her daughter, whom is really (or should be) THE most important asset in her life, before something terrible happens, and…..of course, the “Mom” will blame everyone BUT the woman in the mirror.
    I would have found out from the little girl where she lives and paid old “Mom” a visit & tell her what went on ~ but my guess is it would have fallen on deaf ears.

  25. Nannys are strangers. Even the best ones.
    Sometimes parents can be incompetent and negligent–cruel, even–in which case a caring, nurturing nanny can mean all the difference in the world to the child. Be careful of gross generalizations.

  26. Wall:
    I was thinking, what is the nanny. Friend? Sister? Professional? Teacher? Parents cannot really know them that well because of the short time involved and lack of full information. So what are they? Is there an appropriate noun for Risk? How about “Riskella?” I think Stranger comes as close to reality as any. All people are unknown quantities until you know them. Without info, the only thing possible is a gross generalization. So nannies are “Grossa Gereralissimas.”
    It would be ideal if the nanny were a friend to the child, but there is the possibility that they may seem friendly, but are not friendly to the child. There may be nothing akin to sisterhood or a relative or a sage. They may do their best — leave the child for a few minutes with a couple that was surely responsible, but take an unnecessary risk.
    The real question is: Why the did parents and their peers decide to become risk managers instead of parents? How can nanny bashing possibly stand in lieu of parenting? Who said that only certain times with their child was quality time? A nanny hired because of preference, not necessity, is difficult to understand. Peers lurking in parks watching the nannies is weird.

  27. I understand that in many, a great many households, dual incomes are required. But, when I see folks living in a million dollar ++ house, with a nanny like this example, ‘ya gotta wonder why the adults don’t sell the thing and relocate to a house costing 1/2 (or less) with 1/2 (or less) the tax burden so the the wife can stay at home and be a full time Mommy. Why? Because, from the examples that I have meet, they are so full of themselves, and all of the goodies that they have purchased, that it becomes an obsession to have everything that every “friend” has…and that’s one heck of alot of “stuff” ~ and all that “stuff” clouds their intelligence as to the real job that they need to do, and that’s called parenting. It’s called being there for their young in support and love & guidence.
    Regarding the comment about “Dad”….
    Yes, IF Dad is home on weekends, he should relieve Mom of her duties and get to know his daughter better and spend good time with her, just the two of them, so Mom can have “Mom-Time”.
    A nanny can never take the place of a mommy.

  28. Sandy,
    Has it ever occurred to you that the DADDY can stay home and care for the child while MOM goes to work to support the family?

  29. Sandy,
    Has it ever occurred to you that the DADDY can stay home and care for the child while MOM goes to work to support the family?

  30. Sandy,
    Has it ever occurred to you that the DADDY can stay home and care for the child while MOM goes to work to support the family?

  31. Sandy,
    Has it ever occurred to you that the DADDY can stay home and care for the child while MOM goes to work to support the family?

  32. Seriously, the dollar-sign teeth show a lack of the most basic awareness. A much more savvy choice would be a nanny with Euro or RMB caps.

  33. Parents cannot really know them that well because of the short time involved and lack of full information.
    I know one family who had the same nanny for 15 years. Another had the same one for 10 years, and only gave her up because they moved 3000 miles away. When the older child got married, the former nanny came all that way to attend the wedding.
    Why the did parents and their peers decide to become risk managers instead of parents?
    It’s the nature of the job. Should you let your kid ride a bike in the street? Walk to school? Play in the yard? All risky ventures.
    A nanny hired because of preference, not necessity, is difficult to understand.
    You don’t have to understand it. It’s not your business. If you want to make it your business, though, you’ll have plenty of company. The Taliban, to take one example, loves to meddle in the morals of families. So do fundamentalist Christians in this country.

  34. Wall:
    I am coming around to your position. I don’t want to judge, or be a member of the Taliban. Now that I think about it, people who hire nannies don’t have to explain anything. I don’t want to make a judgment of their outsourcing of children for economic reasons. Their spending helps the economy. Every minute that they are wasting on mundane tasks, they could be working or spending. Every minute we discuss the issue is wasted. We don’t have to think about it or interfere with another’s business; just automatically buy the products and services of our neighbor in the name of tolerance. It tends to work out. A Nanny is hardly the equivalent of a Borg Maturation Chamber, or a biological Tivo device. Nannies are people, very often very nice.

  35. Has it ever occurred to you that the DADDY can stay home and care for the child while MOM goes to work to support the family?
    Does she have a sister ? 🙂
    Few & far between…. Personally, I’ve never met such a couple, but not saying they are not out there…

  36. Uh,yea, I suppose I’m totally uncool & uninformed but WHAT is a grill?
    Any information would be much appreciated so that I can start the new year off by learning something new 😉

  37. Got it. Don’t have kids unless you are completely non-disfunctional, will stay home and raise them yourselves, prepare them 3 square, healthy meals a day and love them completely while sacrificing yourself, nice cars, a lovely home and all your fun and sense of outside accomplishment to do so.
    This is like the best form of birth control yet. Sounds like fun.
    What if you give it all up and they turn out to be a meth-addicted rapist or shoot up a mall, do you get your life back?

  38. I am mother, daughter, sister, friend, co-worker, high school grad, college grad, employee, volunteer, gardener, writer, baker, runner, and neighbor. First and foremost, I am me. I grew up believing I can have it all, and I am starting to think it was a myth. But what I do know is that I choose this working mom lifestyle to teach my daughters that they too can be anything they want to be. My work, whether it be paid or volunteer, gives me confidence and a sense of accomplishment. There aren’t enough women in the workforce shaping policy and making life easier for other working moms. Not enough time off, mediocre benefits, high out of pocket medical expenses…male dominated society… but I digress.
    Don’t judge me for what I choose or what I do. It is because I want a better life for my children, and want them to see how they too can make a difference.

  39. ackme, if you do all that – your sceanero will more than likely not happen. You do not have to deprive yourself of everything, you just sometimes cannot have everything. Your offspring’s needs come before your frills. Remember, a decent college education is $30,000 @ year, TODAY, in 2007. That’s $120,000 for 4 years per student. Just remember that.

  40. Attacking and judging nannies in the stead of the mothers, and no explanation as to the NECESSITY of nannies, leaves me to believe that they are considered a consumer item by the mothers who use them. It is then possible to judge the mothers, morally, not because they are bad mommies, but because they have blindly picked a consumer item without thought. This purchase is different. Where are the mothers saying, “This is not a purchase like a hummer, I NEED to have a nanny, or would certainly do it myself.” Instead, I hear, “This purchase is fine. If you question me, I don’t have to justify it because YOUR judgment has no value to me because is a hollow moral judgment, and I say tomato.” The issue just seems to be avoided on this board.

Comments are closed.